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Topic: Accounting

Tax Tips: Writing Off Asset Purchases

Oct 12, 2017 / by Pat Stokowski

Nobody likes taxes. Am I right?

Tax time usually means more work, more unintelligible jargon, and more confusion for you and your growing business. Our goal in this article is to turn this time of the year into a time where you can leverage existing tax laws to the best benefit of your business.

Today we will talk about special depreciation rules and how to write off asset purchases to decrease your tax liability. Let's start with the obvious first question: What is depreciation?

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Tags: Accounting

Business Checklist: 5 Tasks to Tackle at the Start of Fall

Sep 19, 2017 / by Medha Patel

With the leaves changing color and summer coming to an end, the Fall season is a great time to evaluate your business financials and find out where your money is going. Before you break out the sweaters and scarves, and way before you carve a pumpkin or dress up as Wonder Woman, contact your bookkeeper or accountant, as it may be time to reevaluate and make some changes. Here are a couple ways to start the fall season off right!

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Tags: Accounting

QuickBooks Desktop, QuickBooks Online, or NetSuite? One Company's Journey Through All Three

Aug 28, 2017 / by Jessica Stewart

 

The company was growing quickly, we needed better tools, we made fast decisions, and before you knew it, we had tried three different accounting platforms in two years. We learned the hard way. Let me walk you through what happened, so that you don't have to.

I work as a staff accountant at a software company with 20-50 employees, which has started to exit the startup stage. Two years ago, Management decided to make the switch from QuickBooks Desktop to NetSuite. This year, the company is switching from NetSuite back to QuickBooks (Online). Yes, after only two years and a whole lot of man and woman hours, we are going back.

So, given the company is still moving forward and growing, why are we are moving back to the simple accounting platform that we started with when there were just a handful of employees? Let me explain and hopefully it will help others decide when it is really the right time to switch.

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Tags: Accounting

The Accounting Industry's Death is Great News for Your Business

Aug 17, 2017 / by Michael Burdick

Change isn’t comfortable — especially when it comes to industries steeped in tradition, such as accounting. Whether they welcome the innovation or loathe the disruption, accounting firms are forced to adjust as their previously static sector grapples with major change.

We’re living during a watershed moment for accounting, which creates repercussions throughout the business world. It's the end of accounting as we know it, but entrepreneurs should feel fine. A new normal will rise from the ashes of the archaic industry, and this revival will lower costs and increase transparency for businesses in every sector.  Read the full article in Entrepreneur here.
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Accounting Is Flawed, and Financial Disruptors Are Licking Their Chops

Jul 31, 2017 / by Michael Burdick

The world has changed since the 1950s, but you wouldn’t know it by the processes of a typical accounting firm. Most cling happily to antiquated operating procedures, with barely an acknowledgment of the shifting sands of a cultural, social, and workplace revolution brought about, in part, by a wave of top Millennial talent.

Like them, love them, or loathe them, Millennials are a force to be reckoned with, especially for sectors not prepared for disruption — like accounting.

Millennials and their truly unique perspectives on what work is, should be, and will be are providing a wake-up call across all trades. Those in the accounting and finance worlds would be wise to listen and learn the Millennial mindset.  Read the full article, published by the Observer, here.
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Does My Business Need an Accountant?

Welcome to Part 2 of our “Does my business need…” series, where we break through financial gobbledigook to help you figure out your business’s needs. Jargon out, simplicity in.

Other articles in the series:
Does my business need a bookkeeper?
Does my business need a financial analyst? 
Does my business need a part-time CFO?

What does an accountant do?

An accountant digests and presents the information that a bookkeeper enters into the accounting system. Their role is less transactional than a bookkeeper’s and more interpretive. Accountants help management make business decisions; they compile financial statements like income statements, balance sheets, and cash flows; assist with tax returns; and enter more complex journal entries (deferred revenue, accrued expenses, etc). While a bookkeeper generates data, an accountant helps you understand and turn that data into action.

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What the Start of Summer Should Trigger for Your Business

Depending on your business, summer might be the busiest time of year, the slowest time of year, or just another time of year. Regardless of what’s happening in your business, June, July, and August are the perfect months to think about what could help you manage through the crazy or fill the lull.

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4 Summer Tasks to Prep Your Business for a Stellar Year

Ah… summer, the time for barbecues, the beach, concerts, and books. While I’m sure that new John Grisham novel is calling your name, you know what’s screaming it? Your business’s books. That’s right, summer is a great time to evaluate how your business is performing and take care of some of those unsexy tasks that just need to get done. So, when summer hits each year, trigger these 4 to-dos.

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How Often Should I Review My Business Budget? A Mid-year Guide

The vast majority of businesses create a budget for the year and then never look at it again (until the end of the year when they’re creating the budget for the following year). Sound familiar? We thought so.

Because so few business owners actually make the time to review their budget over the course of the year, doing so may give you a huge leg up on your competitors. Imagine two lemonade stands: Lulu’s and Larry’s. Both developed a budget for the summer, but only Lulu did a midsummer review. She realized that her cost of goods sold was higher than she had budgeted. When she dug in, she realized that cost of lemons at her local grocery store had slowly increased over the past few weeks without her even noticing.

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Financial Model Vs. Budget: The Showdown

Back last year, we wrote a post on How to Build a Basic Financial Model (model template download included!) and got a lot of great feedback on it… so we took the concept on the road. Or more like across the city to a financial modeling workshop at Chicago’s hottest food and beverage incubator, The Hatchery.

While the audience consisted primarily of food and beverage consumer packaged goods startups (with a few restaurants thrown in), they asked a lot of great questions we thought would be helpful to share.

What is the difference between a financial model and a budget?

One topic that seemed to generate a lot of questions was budgeting. Several business owners admitted to having spent days, if not weeks, pulling budgets together for a specific point in time--to present at an investor meeting, to kick off a new product launch, to start a new year--but most never took the time to keep the budget updated afterward. Others had never built a budget at all.

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